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ICC Men's ODI World Cup 2023

World Cup 2023: Pakistan team faces visa delay, cancels team bonding trip to Dubai

Pakistan team at the 2023 World Cup | PAK facing visa delays
by Wisden Staff 2 minute read

With less than a week to go for their first 2023 World Cup warm-up match, Pakistan face a visa hurdle, which has forced them to cancel their pre-tournament team bonding trip to Dubai.

The Pakistan contingent is still awaiting visas to fly to India for the ten-team event which begins on October 5. Ahead of the tournament, each team will play two warm-up matches each, with Pakistan’s first one against New Zealand in Hyderabad, on October 29.

As per their original plan, the team was supposed to gather in Dubai for a pre-tournament session for a couple of days, before heading to Hyderabad. However, the visa delay has scuppered their plans: they now plan to fly from Lahore on Wednesday, just two days ahead of their first warm-up in Hyderabad.


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PCB sources told Wisden.com that visa applications had been submitted a week ago, with Pakistan having been assured by the ICC that they would be provided visas by the Indian government. The Pakistan contingent’s initial plan was to fly out from Dubai to Hyderabad on Sunday or Monday (24th/25th), giving them sufficient time to prepare for their first warm-up game.

According to the source, the delay has had a “knock-on effect”, “hampering their preparations” ahead of the warm-up game against New Zealand, which is set to be played without spectators, after local police in Hyderabad couldn’t provide adequate security, as per an Indian Express report.

Pakistan’s participation in the World Cup has been a long-drawn saga: in August, the team got government clearance to travel to India, following months of uncertainty, which was complicated further by India’s decision to not travel to Pakistan for this year’s Asia Cup. Only four games were played in Pakistan, the original hosts, with the tournament following a hybrid model, and the remaining fixtures being held in Sri Lanka.

Pakistan’s second warm-up match is against Australia, on October 3, before they face Netherlands in their opening fixture on October 6, with both of those matches to be played in Hyderabad.

Pakistan announced their squad for the World Cup on September 22, confirming that Naseem Shah’s shoulder injury, that he sustained during the Asia Cup, had ruled him out of the competition. Hassan Ali earned a comeback, replacing Naseem in the squad. Hassan last played an ODI in June 2022.

The entire Pakistan schedule for the World Cup is here.

To bet on the World Cup with our Match Centre Partners bet365 head here.

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